Some of the most crucial issues in lubricant management involve getting the right lubricant to the right place at the right time. On many occasions, getting these things “right” is not particularly problematic. What happens, however, when something does go wrong around your operations? Your inventory control may not have been updated, shipments may have been delayed or other unforeseen circumstances may have caused a critical shortage of lubricant(s) at your site. In these situations, substitutions may have to be made—quickly! How, though, do you fi nd a compatible lubricant substitute?
Lubrication Management & Technology’s “Mineral-Based Lubricant Exchange” guide has been compiled to help you in the event that substitutes must be chosen. The chart on the following pages has been designed as an easy-to-use cross-reference of the products of major lubricant formulators, based on the information they provided to our editors.
Keep in mind that the products shown on our chart are general guidelines for comparison purposes only— they do not infer that performance is interchangeable. If you are considering a lubricant substitution for a specifi c application, you MUST consult the respective formulator(s) to ensure proper performance.
Notes on using the chart
Viscosity is a widely accepted property for comparing lubricants. It is expressed in several ways: ISO, Saybolt, AGMA and Kinematic. Note that the viscosity equivalents of ISO and Saybolt are what we have used in our chart to compare the various products of the listed formulators. (Refer to Figs. 1 and 2 for a comparison of common viscosities and to see the effect of temperature on viscosity.)
Analyzing the bigger picture
Although following recommended oil-change and greasing schedules is the usual way of doing business in a facility, this alone will not optimize machine performance and minimize downtime. Regular oil analysis—conducted in-house or by a qualified lab—is another powerful tool to use in enhancing reliability and increasing uptime. Remember that accurate and timely oil analysis can alert personnel to impending lubricant deterioration or machine malfunctioning, and allow them to initiate corrective action—well before an actual failure occurs.
Joe Foszcz is a contributing editor to Lubrication Management & Technology. For more information, e-mail him directly: email@example.com